Spending Time with Kayak Fishing Guide Josh Harvel E-mail
Monday, 12 October 2009 06:33

Since I’m spending time in Florida I try to hook up with as many fellow kayak fishers as I can.  That includes guides.  The first guide I got together with is Josh Harvel, aka yaknitup on the KFS Florida forum.  Josh is a lifetime fisherman who’s been living in the Cape Coral area for 20 years.  We had been communicating on the forums and arranged to get together and fish.  When I met Josh the first time it was obvious he had a handicap.  He doesn’t walk well and when I asked he told me he was born with Cerebral Palsy.  Kayak fishing helps him keep active.  He fishes from Hurricane Phoenix 13s, as they’re the lightest kayaks that can take abuse.  He finds the lightweight of the Phoenix makes it much easier for him to load and unload.

kayak fishing with Josh

We were going to fish Matlacha and our launch point was only a few minutes away.  Josh has a friend Steve who owns Island Visions.  Steve let’s Josh park there and he utilizes a dock to launch.  As soon as we cleared the small canal I had a hit and reeled in a small trout.  Once we hit the main channel the adjacent flat had some mullet and Josh said to cast into them as reds and trout are usually amongst them.  Josh landed a red.  Next we headed under a bridge and across a flat.  Along a mangrove island Josh pointed to an area that produced well.  It did as I picked up a nice upper slot red.  We worked the area a bit as we continued to travel north.  Our destination was a large flat where we were in search of tailing reds.  On the way we hit a couple spots and picked up a bunch of ladyfish.  We got to the grass flats and they were the first I’d seen since the Indian River the previous fall.  The hard bottomed was perfect for wading.  Unfortunately the reds didn’t tail.  I did see a few cruising and got a hit from a fish that was way over slot. We worked our way across the flats as we on the way back to the launch.  On the way we hit a slot where we caught several snook up to about 25” and I got a small red.  We hit the flat near the launch and got a bunch of trout.  I commented that we both made our slams and it’d be nice to do the same on Saturday when we were both competing in the Kayak Slam series, SW division.  I was going to fish near where I’m hanging my hat in Goodland and Josh Matlacha.  I ended up a respectable 3rd and Josh took first.  I joined him and fished the same area for the second leg of the event and placed 3rd.  Josh got 5 reds that day. I unfortunately couldn’t get a red but there were some big trout.  My largest was 20”.    I spent a little time on a 20-pound plus jack that was working the area where I had caught my largest red on the previous trip. Then realized if I hooked the fish it would use up the remaining hour of the tournament.  So I tried for a red on the last flat and caught my largest trout.

more josh

Josh guides both fishing and eco tours in the area around Cape Coral from Estero Bay up to Charlotte Harbor.  He concentrates on the Matlacha and Pine Island.  He charges $150 for the first angler and $50 for each additional up to 3 total for 4-6 hours of fishing.  He targets redfish, snook, trout, tarpon and any other inshore game fish.  You can reach Josh at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or                 239-233-0655                

 

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